As the Scalable Vector Graphics and Flash® with its Format "SWF" are both vector-formats, you can compare them directly. Please note one important thing: the interactive and animated webpages / presentations are just one part of SVG but mostly all of SWF. With SVG you can e.g. make maps, printing publishings and much more which is not really good supported by SWF. That is why what here is compared are only the part "interactive web-publishing/presentation of SVG" and SWF. The table is not complete but shows the most important differences.
|Property||SWF (Flash®)||Scalable Vector Graphics|
|Format can be easily read and write||No (Binary)||Yes (Text)|
|Filesize||Very small||Small, can be zipped (packed), too|
|Support of Styling (e.g. through CSS)||No||Yes|
|Indexing through search-engines||No||Yes|
|Embeding||No||Yes (Html, XHtml, XML)|
|Plugin needed||Yes||Currently yes, will be supported in Browser later|
|Searching in graphics for any Text||No||Yes|
|Server-Generation through scripting-languages||No||Yes (Perl, Python, PHP, JSP, ASP, ...)|
|DOM||Uses own DOM||W3C-Dom (Standard) in Version 2|
|Plugin Availabilty||From Macromedia: On more than 90% of all PCs installed||From Adobe: More than 10% of all computers that are in the net (50 Mil.). Growing faster than Flash as the plugin is bundled with the Adobe Acrobat Reader.|
|Customizeable Contextmenu||No||Yes (Adobe SVG Viewer 3.0)|
What you have seen here are only the most important differences. For getting in details about the plugin, Stroking & Filling & Painting and much more, move to the site of Carto.net where you find a mostly complete table at http://www.carto.net/papers/svg/comparison_flash_svg.html.